Next season’s designer collections are no longer the stuff of dreams with Moda Operandi, known otherwise as the first online luxury retailer to provide consumers access to the full collections straight from the runway.
The lux e-tailer has announced that it will continue to service the high end customer thanks to a $60m Series E financing it secured last week. Boston-based asset manager Fidelity Investments led the investment round, with participation from existing shareholders including New Enterprise Associates and Advanced Publications, the parent company of Condé Nast. Other current shareholders include New Atlantic Ventures, LVMH and RRE Ventures.
“The continued success we have experienced demonstrates the strength of international luxury consumers and their demand for the exceptional assortment of product, access to brands, and runway collections that only Moda Operandi can provide,” said Moda Operandi CEO Deborah Nicodemus. “We are thrilled with the support our investors have shown us, and look forward to continuing to transform the online luxury shopping experience for our clients all over the world.” “Moda Operandi’s disruptive business model and technology platform create a unique value proposition for both consumers as well as designers and brands,” said Tony Florence, General Partner at NEA. “It’s disrupting a massive global market that’s in the early innings of penetration online.”
Where designer pieces have not always been available in traditional luxury retail environments, Moda Operandi has steps in by hosting online trunkshows that allow customers to secure runway fashion months in advance, by placing a 50% deposit. The site’s offering gives consumers unlocked access to runway fashion and “puts the focus back on the designer” as Lauren Santo Domingo, Co-Founder comments. “We are changing the way people perceive and interact with the runway,” she added.
Launched in February 2011, Moda Operandi to date has raised over $130m in funding. This latest round of financing will be used toward growing the presence of the business in key markets like Europe, Asia and the Middle East, mobile technology, growing the loyalty program, customer acquisition, and developing new brand relationships.
“The Moda team has distinguished itself by laser focus on building and serving its extraordinary client base, empowering the most discerningly fashionable women globally with exclusive access to the top established and emerging designers,” said Andrew Siegel, Executive Vice President of Conde Nast parent Advance Publications.